Monday, June 25, 2018
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Man who attacked cop shot dead in front of mother

CCTV camera footage shows Reynaldo Lee Jr.’s mother (upper photo) chasing him after he storms out of their house following an argument. Lee is later shot by PO1 Gester Versoza whom he attacked with a knife. —Screenshots courtesy of Manila police district

A 34-year-old man was shot dead in front of his mother by a police officer whom he had earlier stabbed for no apparent reason in Manila on Saturday.

Reynaldo Lee Jr. died at the University of Santo Tomas Hospital at 1:24 p.m. after he was shot at least eight times by PO1 Gester Versoza of the Jose Abad Santos police station intelligence unit. The two did not know each other.

Earlier, Lee attacked Versoza with a knife as the police officer who was in civilian clothes was riding his motorcycle on his way home on Fajardo Street in Sampaloc at 12:15 a.m.

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Unprovoked attack

Footage taken by a closed-circuit television camera in the area showed Lee running down the street and then kicking Versoza’s motorcycle, knocking the police officer to the ground.

Lee then started stabbing the police officer with a Swiss knife before the latter drew his gun and shot him several times.

The victim’s mother, Emidarda Mangcopa, witnessed the incident as she had ran after her son when he stormed out of their house. Just minutes earlier, mother and son had gotten into an argument.

The police said that Lee was drunk when he went after Versoza who just happened to be passing by the area on his motorcycle.

In an interview, Versoza said he was forced to shoot Lee to defend himself.

Proof based on footage

“His mother said I was circling around him (Lee) before I ran toward him. But the footage taken by the CCTV camera showed that he attacked me first,” he added.

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Asked why he fired at the victim repeatedly, Versoza said he was afraid because he was already wounded.

The police officers, despite saying that he acted in self-defense, will be charged with homicide, investigators said.

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